What does good look like?

This is a question that everyone involved in continuous improvement should ask themselves and their teams. Not being able to describe what good looks like can result in unclear expectations about performance targets, variable performance across organizations – and it can affect a customer’s perception of quality. So how do we establish a common understanding…

Influential Individuals: Developing Lean leaders to transform our organization

Lean leaders aren’t always in a position of authority – but they are in a position to influence (as we all are to one degree or another). Regardless of their formal role, Lean leaders are trained to nurture continuous improvement through facilitation and coaching, which can positively impact and promote culture change. Employees trained in…

Lean term or Pokémon?

We get it – learning Lean, and continually examining the way we think about things, can be a challenge. Not only does Lean teach us a different way of thinking and doing things, it also uses Japanese terms to describe various techniques – and so requires a different way of talking too. If you have…

A Party Game for Visual Management Lovers

We know King County employees can create some cool visual management systems to improve hiring processes and vehicle maintenance outcomes. Can King County employees create a visual management system to reduce national energy consumption? Can they do it during lunch? It turns out the answers are yes and yes. Three groups of King County employees develop visual…

Introduction to Lean Problem-Solving

On August 5th, King County’s Continuous Improvement Team introduced a new competitor to the crowded Seattle coffee marketplace: Jarrett’s Java No, the Lean team hasn’t gone off the deep end of caffeinated entrepreneurialism. Jarrett’s Java (inspired by King County Deputy Executive and staunch Lean champion Fred Jarrett)  is the centerpiece case study exercise of the new Lean…